||The "hyperactivity" symptoms
in ADHD may include excessive running or climbing in young
children, or extremely restless and fidgety behavior in older
children. In contrast to a normal high level of activity in some
children, hyperactivity is haphazard, poorly organized and not
goal-directed. ADHD is ten times more common in boys than in
A child who has ADHD shows several of the following
- has difficulty organizing work and gives the impression he
or she has not heard instructions.
- is easily distracted.
- makes careless, impulsive errors.
- frequently calls out in class.
- has difficulty awaiting his or her turn in group
- fails to follow through on parents' requests.
- is unable to play games for the same amount of time as
other children of the same age.
Without proper treatment, the child may fall behind in
schoolwork, and friendships may suffer because of poor
cooperation in playing and other social activities. Self-esteem
suffers because the child experiences more failure than success
and is criticized by teachers and family who do not recognize a
Research clearly documents that medication can be helpful,
and that medication prescribed for ADHD works best as part of a
comprehensive plan of treatment including ongoing evaluation
and, often, medical psychotherapy for the child, help for the
family, and consultation with teachers.
If a child shows behavior problems like those of ADHD,
parents may ask their pediatrician or family physician to refer
them to a child and adolescent psychiatrist, who can diagnose
and treat the child for this illness. By meeting with the child
and adolescent psychiatrist, parents can learn how to cope with
their child's problem. In addition, the child psychiatrist often
helps teachers and school officials work out ways to teach more
effectively those children with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity